With the team fighting to save relegation, can Nathan Hall's men throw a tough challenge to the young Indian side?
Avinabo, Vishal, Souvik, Kotal;
Rajinder, Prabir, Milan, Pronay;
Jhingan, Farid, Jaiswal, Das;
Landa, Sardar, Zenith, Lugun;
An I-League Round 18 fixture this Monday will witness Pailan Arrows and United Sikkim vying for glory at the Kalyani Stadium in Kolkata. Pailan Arrows got back to winning ways last weekend as they defeated Shillong Lajong 1-0 at home. On the other hand, United Sikkim played out a goalless draw in their midweek fixture against Mohun Bagan.
For the home side, this edition of I-League has been a roller coaster ride. They had started the season comprehensively, even making it into the top three after first six matches. But as the season progressed, it seemed that the young side seemed to have lost their way. They became over dependent on the goal-scoring abilities of Holicharan Narzary and Alwyn George. The midfield has been the main cause of concern for their Australian coach Arthur Papas as the team has lacked creativity.
Talking of the other team, the newly promoted United Sikkim side has been the worst performers of this season in the I-League. Their side mainly consists of inexperienced young Indian players who have found it hard to cope up with the challenges of the top tier teams.
The team relies largely on the likes of Nima Tamang and Nurudeen Salau for scoring goals. Nathan Hall, their Australian coach has joined the team midway this season and has found it difficult to improve the performance notably. The porous defense has been the main reason for their failure.
However the draw against Mohun Bagan would have certainly increased their confidence manifold and that could play a major role in how they set up against Pailan Arrows. Hall has previously mentioned that his side need to make it count when they face teams from the lower half of the table if they hope to survive the relegation blues. Anything other than a win for them would be a huge blow to their chances of being in the top division.
Pailan Arrows: Young Indian striker Seminlen Doungel has joined the side on loan from East Bengal. He got a start in the previous match and may find himself on the bench with the return of Holicharan Narzary. Centre-half Souvik Ghosh makes a return to the starting XI
United Sikkim: There is not much options available for Nathan Hall. However, it can be expected he will try to shuffle his cards given their disappointing performance.
|DID YOU KNOW?|
- United Sikkim has conceded the highest number of goals in this edition of I-League (37).
- Nathan Hall and Arthur Papas are the two youngest coaches of the I-League.
- Pailan Arrows had won only two matches in their last season. This year, they have already won five.
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